<
>

Colorado forward says team was ready to call game

TORONTO -- Colorado forward Teemu Selanne says he and his
teammates considered leaving the ice following Todd Bertuzzi's hit
on Steve Moore earlier this month in Vancouver.

"When this thing happened with Bertuzzi, I didn't even want to
go on the ice any more," Selanne told the Toronto Sun. "The
players were saying the same thing, 'Let's just stop this game
right now.'

"A lot of guys were talking about it, saying, 'Let's just stop
this game. It's not a safe place.'"

Bertuzzi has been suspended for the rest of the season for
punching Moore from behind and driving his head into the ice during
Colorado's victory. Moore suffered cracked vertebrae in his neck, a
concussion and facial lacerations.

According to Selanne, Avalanche general manager Pierre Lacroix
would have backed his team had they decided to call off the game.

"Pierre Lacroix came to the bench and said to the referees,
'Stop the game right now. I just talked with the league.' But the
referees obviously couldn't do it."

Selanne said players need to take more responsibility.

"I think every team should have a meeting and talk about this
because we can't let these things happen," he said. "I know the
coaches tell us to play hard, finish your check, be tough, but
there's a line between stupidity and playing hard.

"The bottom line is the guys have to be responsible for what
they're doing and be smart. It's all about respect right now."

Selanne also suggested there could more than just emotion at
work.

"The guys are so fired up. I don't know if they're taking
Sudies [Sudafed] or ephedrine or whatever, but guys are not
thinking clearly and if that's the case, we've got to fix that
problem."